As Oracle prepares to launch new cloud partner program perks, CEO Mark Hurd is heading to New York for Oracle CloudWorld on Jan. 20. Among the opportunities and challenges: Continue to communicate how Oracle's momentum is accelerating -- without necessarily competing head-on against Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.
At an analyst meeting on Tuesday, Oracle emphasized human capital management, ERP and supply chain management as key cloud beachheads, according to Constellation Research. Moreover, Hurd pointed to PaaS (platform as a service) as a large opportunity, which SaaS is accelerating for the business, ZDNet reported while quoting Constellation's analysis.
Oracle CloudWorld: Customers and Partners
No doubt, much of this Oracle CloudWorld -- hosted in New York -- is designed for Wall Street customers and corporate IT leaders. But it's a safe bet plenty of channel partners and ISVs (independent service providers) will also be in the audience.
ISVs are critically important to Oracle's cloud strategy. Thousands of software companies offer applications that run on Oracle's databases or integrate with the company's applications. As customers move those on-premises applications to the cloud, Oracle wants to make sure ISVs remain loyal and shift the workloads into Oracle's cloud.
That's where David Hicks -- VP of worldwide ISV, OEM and Java business development -- enters the picture. In a December 2015 interview with ChannelE2E, Hicks said Oracle's cloud ISV strategy focuses on three areas: Existing ISVs, Net New Partners and Entrepreneurs that are just starting to write cloud applications.
Overall, the strategy sounds promising. And Oracle's cloud revenues are growing fast -- up 26 percent to $649 million in Q2 2016 (announced in December 2015).
Still, Wall Street investors want Oracle to further accelerate that business -- especially as sales of traditional on-premises hardware and software face more and more downward pressure.
Paging Mark Hurd
That's why Hurd's Oracle CloudWorld appearance in New York is so darn important. It's the rare opportunity to describe how partners and customers are activating Oracle's cloud for mission critical applications on Wall Street -- while also assuring investors in the crowd that the company is on the right track.
Yes, ChannelE2E will also be in the crowd listening to Hurd. Stay tuned for blog coverage and analysis on January 20.